State Department of Fisheries, Nagaland has adopted Chocolate Mahseer (Neolissochilus hexagonolepis) as the state fish, according to Annual Administrative Report 2008-09 of the department, laid during the recently concluded fourth Nagaland Legislative Assembly session at Kohima. With this adoption, the department is undertaking arduous studies of collections, artificial propagation and various research programmes are initiated towards replenishment and conservation of this fish species.
An official bulletin stated that riverine system of the state revealed the presence of about 199 fish species, of which many have been categorized under ornamental fishes and others as food fishes, both of which have high commercial value in the market. The department has set up a Fish Museum of endemic species of Nagaland at the laboratory cum awareness centres Dimapur which is expected to benefit researchers and educationist.
According to the report, fisheries resources in the form of ponds and tanks, swampy and marshy areas, wet terrace paddy field, lakes, reservoir, streams and rivers in the state provided immense potential under Inland Fisheries Development. The department focuses towards increased productivity in every sector through maximum utilisation of available water bodies. The average productivity levels of fish achieved from ponds, paddy –cum- fish culture and reservoir fisheries is 1900,350 and 153 kgs/ha/yr respectively.